militate | mitigate

(1) To make less severe is to mitigate,
whereas
(2) to increase the force of something is to militate.

Example -
Mutual distrust militated against mitigating their anger.

Etymology -

(1) The word militate derives from the Latin militatum, which is the past participle of militare, serve as a soldier (from miles, soldier).
(2) The word mitigate derives from the Latin mitigare, make mild or gentle (from mitis, gentle or soft).



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